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Serotonin and Depression

dag.stenberg at helsinki.nospam.fi dag.stenberg at helsinki.nospam.fi
Mon Oct 12 04:02:58 EST 1998

Cijadrachon <cijadra at zedat.fu-berlin.de> wrote:
> How about you define depression first.

The medical profession has seen a need to define a disease called "major
depression". The definition includes:
- at least four of the following nearly daily during at least two weeks:
	- loss of appetite
	- either sleeplessness or increased sleep
	- change of psychomotor function: either slowing or agitation
	- loss of interest in or pleasure from everyday functions or
		loss of sexual appetite
	- tiredness, loss of energy
	- feelings of worthlessness, guilt
	- decreased ability to concentrate, slowed thinking, inability
		to make decisions
	- repeated thoughts about death, suicidal thoughts, death wish,
		attempted suicide

This is a condition that doctors feel has to be treated somehow - by
pyshotherapy or by attempting to RESTORE A DYSBALANCE in brain function.

> Else stuff like just having not managed  some personal goal and having
> quite impressively blundered something, grey weather for a  while if
> you are  sensitive to that, one  of  your parents having died, you not
> having enough friends and no nice partner or not never  havin gthought
> about  what you need in life and feeling discontent and lots of other
> stuff might all fall under that term as well.


> >- SSRIs often relieve depression

> Let me guess  what that means: Sticking some  happy pill in to mess up
> chemical balances and drown over signals?

The theory is that the balance IS ALREADY messed up and that it has to 
be restored. Still, I think for example SSRIs attack the symptom, not 
the reason for the disease (they restore the synaptic levels of 
serotonin, but not the reason why serotonin levels are low). And if the
reason does not involve serotonin, they are surely not the correct therapy.

> >- SSRIs combined with serotonin autoreceptor block shortens the delay to clinical result

> What is clinical result?

Patients getting better, getting back motivation, appreciation of self, 
the ability to care for others, etc.

> >- in vivo animal monitoring of serotonergic function parameters,

> Pervert, take  your hands of others not consenting.
> Mess around in yourself  you coward.
> You can monitor in yourself till you hit the grave, but leave your
> hands off others.

Guilty. But I have come to the decision that it is better for mankind 
to find out some important things about the brain, even if it includes
violence on some specially-bred rats, who have a reasonable time while
they are alive in the lab (we do NOT actually torture them, you know).
Anyway, I do not believe your methods are as validated.

> Let me guess, first you take someone who did not grow up naturally,
> then you stick him into some prison, and after altering emotions in
> him that way next you momitor arount in him with the pathetic excuse
> that you need  to satisfy your  curiosity, ...

Naah, the pathetic excuse is that what we Western-neuros find out may 
help hundreds of thousands of people.

> (about Prozac)
> If you want to kill someone, might be just the right drug to take,
> should you still be hindered by eg.1 blocking programs.
> Messing up many positive emotions, too.

Well, a drug that changes the balance as you says, has different actions
in individuals with different dysbalance. An old example: tricyclic
antidepressives make normals tired, and make depressives more energetic.

Dag Stenberg
Dag Stenberg     MD PhD                    stenberg at cc.helsinki.fi
Institute of Biomedicine		   tel: (int.+)358-9-1918532
Department of Physiology                   fax: (int.+)358-9-1918681
P.O.Box 9        (Siltavuorenpenger 20 J)   
FIN-00014 University of Helsinki,Finland   

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